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Tick Tock… Tick Tock….. Throwing a wrench into the works….

By   /   May 23, 2012  /   7 Comments

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I had pretty much thought that last night would turn out as it did but was pleasantly surprised to hear about Jay Corbin’s vote against the grain.

That took some real leadership and I applaud him for being an independent thinker that has evidently thought this whole sordid business out. In doing so he has perhaps evaluated the end result, 40 low income housing units and a Community Center/Theater that serves only a few against the needs of the many and the continued expenditure of tax dollars that will only line the pockets of RSG consulting and the law firm of Rutan and Tucker.

But the real test will come tonight at the Oversight Board meeting. In theory this is how the vote on that contract between the city and itself should breakdown:

  • Cole and Warne representing the city with a contract with itself – “yes”
  • Gillick and Matos representing the County – “no”
  • Meyers representing Copper Mountain College – “no”
  • Cole representing the Hospital – “no” but will vote “yes” due to obvious reasons
  • Price representing the Morongo School District – “no”

In theory, that would kill this continued Frankenstein story developed by city staff with a 3 to 4 vote and the quorum going to “no”. But given the current city staff they will threaten another law suit against the Oversight Board as a group and as individuals if need be if the Oversight Board does not “see” it the city way and vote “yes” tonight.

Now should any of the theoretical four listed above vote “yes”, which favors the city’s interests as opposed to the interests of the various entities that they represent, then I for one will be interested in hearing how they justify that decision to hang out to dry the various entities that they took an oath to protect.

The primary purpose of the Oversight Board is to assist the Successor Agency in “winding down” its debt. It is not the job of the Oversight Board to assist the successor agency in perpetuating the debt for an additional 30 years.

As has been stated the city can take that 15% of the tax increment to pay off the Bonds at the 10 year mark. The remaining 85% will then go to the schools and the hospital. Which in our case means that Price, Meyers, Gillick and Matos will not be serving the interests of the entities they represent if they approve this contract that the city made with itself.

Thank you Jay Corbin for having the courage and the understanding to do what in my opinion is right for the many and not serving the special interests of the few.

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About the author

Steve Spear

Former 29 Palms City Council member from 2002 through 2010. Graduate of Villanova University with a BA majoring in criminal justice. Served in the United States Marine Corps from 1977 through 1990 attaining the rank of Major in the Marine Corps Reserves.


  1. Larry Briggs Larry Briggs says:

    The Oversight Board voted 7 to 0 to approve the Successor Agency Agreement with the City of Twentynine Palms for Administration of Successor Agency Duties and Obligations Regarding Bond Proceeds for Funding Public Improvements Known as Project Phoenix.

    • Dan OBrien Dan OBrien says:

      Thanks Larry for the information….. Ultimately to be turned down by the Department of Finance…. wasting another 20 days. Back to zero. This time no pay check in the offing.

      I wonder will they ever get it????

    • Steve Spear Steve Spear says:

      I really did not expect anything less.

      My comments were made in the theoretical. I would now theorize that the State will reject this latest attempt at thwarting the law and the city will move into the litigation mode because they are now satisfied that all administrative remedies have been attempted but rejected.

      The State will also see that the “Oversight Board” of 29 Palms is a farce as I am sure many but not all are throughout the state.

      As Albert Einstein said “Insanity is doing the same thing, over and over again, but expecting different results.”

      Four answers from the state to four attempts at the same thing by our city staff with the same answer each time – “No”. Now they are going for number five. Sounds like Einstein had it right.

      Thanks for the information Larry I do appreciate our ability to banter ideas and thoughts about without animosity.

  2. Stanley Stanley says:

    Maybe our illustrious leaders have never heard of Einstein?

  3. Upton Sinclair Upton Sinclair says:

    The last time I checked there were NO actual plans. Just pretty pictures and grandiose ideas.

    Nothing has actually been put to the planning commission or the city counsel in the form of plans.

    So with that said the “plans” maybe changed at anytime. We may not get 48 low income houses. We may not get Gary’s new theater (don’t cry). It could revert back to a similar form of the first idea of “project phoenix”.

    • Steve Spear Steve Spear says:

      Hi Upton,

      The irony of this whole thing is if Warne had left Project Phoenix as it was originally planned, a downtown infrastructure improvement and beautification program that would have improved many blocks of the downtown area, then I would be fighting along with them to save the Bonds.

      But when it changed into this 40 unit low income housing complex plopped right on top of a brand new 8 million dollar Community Center/Theater that is when I saw something was amiss and special interests were at play.

      I am still researching a matter of $36,000.00 in Community Development Block Grant money as well as Federal tax dollars that went to Theatre 29 over a 2 year period from Brad Mitzlefelt’s office but I can’t seem to get Mitzlefelt’s office to answer the questions. They say they will and then they don’t.

      I still do not see the State all of a sudden rolling over and now saying it is okay with them to build Project Phoenix. Too many other cities tried the same tactic and too much money is on the line for the State to give a pass to 29 and then try to play hardball with the 300 plus other cities.

      We shall see.

  4. Upton is right. “Nothing has actually been put to the planning commission or the city counsel in the form of plans.” True, all the while Rutan & Tucker, RGS consultants and their attorney continue to rake in repulsive amounts of money — with nada to show for it, on a dead-ringer for a lost appeal.

    The 29 Palm’s ersatz Oversight Board is not an oversight entity at all, rather it’s a rubber stamp of bad decisions followed by more bad decisions. The OB members will live in infamy; who in their right mind would ever want any of these people in public office after their vote last night?

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